As voting for second phase of civic bodies' polls ended on Tuesday, all eyes are on the results. The Congress leaders hope that after the drubbing in the Lok Sabha elections, the party would perform relatively better in these polls.
Party leaders feel that a better show would lift the cadre's morale. In fact, if the party does well, it would also cement the position of Pradesh Congress Committee (PCC) president Arun Yadav. Party leaders say that Yadav had got his way in distribution of tickets and had led the party's campaign.
"The recently held civic elections were almost fought like any major election. We hope that we will do considerably well," said a Congress functionary at the party headquarters. "Under Yadav's leadership, it is the first major state-wide election. Yadav, being a young leader, has faced some degree of opposition from the gaurd, and if the party does well under his command, it will strengthen him," the functionary, who wished not to be named, said.
In the assembly by-polls held in August 2014, the party had won one of the three seats. However, the victory at Bahoriband was considered a big success.
The ruling party had campaigned very strongly and its candidate was riding on sympathy wave. The by-election was held after sitting MLA's death. The BJP gave his son the ticket, however, Congress still won.
However, it was just a by-poll and the BJP won the remaining two seats. Now, with civic elections in 280 urban bodies, it is going to be a clear verdict.
Though Yadav couldn't be contacted, Congress chief spokesperson KK Mishra told HT that the Congress is hopeful of a better performance in the civic polls. "Definitely, if the party does well, the credit will go to the PCC president," he added.
The Congress has lost successive elections in MP. The ruling party has been in power in the state since 2003 and in the Lok Sabha polls too, it had won 27 seats, while the Congress could win just two.